S'COOL Scienceby: Linda Bryson

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This article details the experiences of a fifth-grade class taking part in a NASA project in which students make observations of clouds and other weather data in order to reinforce satellite data and scientific research.

  • Elementary
  • Middle
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Reviews (3)
  • on Wed Jun 15, 2011 3:48 PM

What is more exciting for a student than helping NASA conduct research? This article demonstrates an effective way for students to learn about weather, while at the same time, assisting NASA in interpreting satellite images. The author, Linda Bryson, has her students pursue a year long investigation on cloud cover and recording surface measurements, such as temperature, humidity, and pressure. This year long project allows students to begin to recognize and understand weather patterns. Bryson also is able to integrate this into other subject areas. She has her students read The Big Storm by B. Hiscock to incorporate language arts. Bryson also includes mathematics by having students convert between Fahrenheit and Celsius; and read measurements. Finally, the students are required to do map reading, which ties into social studies. All in all, the best part of the unit is that it allows students to practice recording meaningful data that is used to assist actual scientist in their discoveries. This is well worth the read and can be incorporated into any grade level.

Michael Reigner
Michael Reigner

  • on Tue May 17, 2011 8:50 PM

This is an exciting and engaging article that describes a NASA project called "S'COOL", which stands for "Students' Cloud Observations On-Line". The author, a fifth grade teacher, involved her students in this on-going international project in which students use the internet to find out when one of two NASA Earth-observing satellites will pass over their school. They go outside and make observations about the clouds, and report this data using an online form that assists scientists with ground truth- seeing how well satellite observations match up to ground-based observations. Students are engaged in authentic research as they learn about weather and collect data, and also have the opportunity to do cross-disciplinary activities that incorporate this project.

Dorian Janney  (Gaithersburg, MD)
Dorian Janney (Gaithersburg, MD)

  • on Wed Mar 23, 2011 9:20 PM

Through NASA's S'COOL Project, students have the opportunity to participate in actual NASA research. This is great way to make what students are learning relevant and meaningful to their lives. The article outlines how one teacher participated in the program and gives more information about how the program works.

Kate Geer  (Louisville, CO)
Kate Geer (Louisville, CO)

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